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#1
Mar 5, 2010 9:09 AM

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Posts: 357
Hey,
I'm pretty new to Japanese, but recently I've encountered a few issues. Was wondering if anyone can help me out with one that keeps bugging me.

When you have two kanji that mean almost the same thing and share the same kun reading, how do you choose which one to use? Especially since some dictionaries forget to add the nuance, leaving them with the same meaning.
e.g. 旧い and 古い. I've seen 旧い listed in a dictionary as having the stand-alone meaning as old, asides from the old times meaning. Basically, that would make them the same word with the same meaning, but with a different kanji=/.'tis confusing.
Modified by goblinlady, Mar 5, 2010 9:15 AM
 
#2
Mar 5, 2010 3:46 PM

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Posts: 239
Well, one answer is that you should use the one that you have seen the most, meaning the most common one, according to the context ofc. In your example, is 古い used with buildings, time or anything else? I most likely see 古い with buildings, so I would use that instead of 旧い.

Basically, you have to immerse yourself in Japanese by reading or just by looking at kanjis in many texts. You have to experience kanjis as much as you can. And you would like to ask yourself: which kanji is used with what?

Sometimes, even with the same meanings and same readings, two kanjis can be totally different depending on context :D Just like saying something is beautiful and pretty.
 
#3
Mar 7, 2010 9:33 PM

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Um, well, I guess it helps if you can actually read the Japanese that comes up in your IME. You know, there are bubbles that come up and tell you which ones are used.

Also, it helps to have worked through Remembering the Kanji because he picks keywords/meanings for each character that express its subtle meanings sometimes. Like, 旧 is "olden times", and the IME says: 時代遅れ。⇒古い。⇔新 -- The only example of 旧 I can think of is in 旧約聖書(きゅうやくせいしょ). Which would make sense given the Heisig keyword. 古 is just given the meaning old.. so it could be a 古い友人 or just a plain 古い人. Just like you can't have 暖かいスープ, but you can have 温かいスープ.
 
#4
Mar 27, 2010 5:14 AM

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May I ask a question too?
How can you guys see the kanji, do you need a special font for it or what?
If yes, where do you get it?
Coz I can't see all kanji (can see all kana though)..
 
#5
Mar 27, 2010 6:19 AM

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What windows do you have?
 
#6
Mar 27, 2010 7:31 AM

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Posts: 239
depends on where you cant see kanji. If you're on Windows, you can check on your internet browser your word encoding option in the "view" tab. mine is on unicode but try different ones until you find it.

cant help that much except that there might be an option in your language options in the control panel, where you must install asian languages...
 
#7
Mar 27, 2010 8:31 AM

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I have Windows XP and Internet Explorer 8.
The Encoding part didn't work for me..
The control panel option asks for the original Windows XP CD, but I didn't get it coz my pc already had Windows installed when I got it..
Any chance on downloading it without the CD??
 
#8
Mar 27, 2010 1:16 PM

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After adding Japanese to the Languages, I apparently had to restart..
I get all kanji perfectly now.
Thanks for the control-panel-languages hint!
 
#9
Mar 28, 2010 6:55 AM

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np :P
 
Mar 28, 2010 11:14 AM

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Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 1376
I found a link for the East-Asian Support Files, and can now also use the IME..

ありがとう ございます!
 
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